The Masters is two days away! Tomorrow is the par 3 tournament, then let the games begin. The Masters is my favorite Major and over the past few weeks, we have discussed how players qualify, who we picked to be champion, and other aspects of fantastic golf tournament.
Main stream media has most of the news covered at nauseum, so I plan to stay away from most of those topics. As The Masters approaches, there are some news articles that caught my attention. These noteworthy stories are worth repeating because through all the crazy media hype, I do not want any of these great stories to slip by.
Unfortunately, Mr. Arnold Palmer, The King, will not take part at The Masters this year due to an injured shoulder. At 86 years old, his body has decided it is time to step back. He will not participate in the par 3 tournament either, but according to his comments, he will attend the Champions Dinner and be on hand to watch the tournament unfold. This, unfortunately, was inevitable, and we do hope ‘Arnie’ is back next year to fill the big hole he leaves this year.
Tiger Woods decided not to play in The Masters this year. I am fairly sure no one is surprised at this, but, personally, I would rather see Tiger bow out gracefully, then not meet any of the expectations of his fans.
Freddie Couples will not play this year either. He is one of my all-time favorite players and with “Boom Boom” out, this years Masters will a little worse off.
Tom Watson announced that is his last Masters. The two-time Masters Champion will gracefully walk away and I think Tom is doing the right thing. Although he has sparks of greatness from time to time, Watson knows when it is time. He state in an interview: “It really is. It’s the end. It’s 40 years. It’s the end. And I regret I don’t have the tools in the toolbox to be able to continue on.” Might I suggest he would be a possible replacement for honorary starter at future Masters!
The par 3 tournament starts tomorrow. I think this unique and fun event is great. I enjoy seeing the families walk the course as caddies, players, and well what ever else they decide to do. I realize the jinx of this fun event is that no par 3 tournament winner has won The Masters in the same year, but I still think it is fun. Maybe that is one of the reasons Rory McIlroy decided not play in this fun event this year. Regardless, with any luck we will see another hole-in-one by Jack Nicklaus!
Do not overlook the 6 amateurs in the field. I think it would be great if one of these players wins the whole darn thing, but I am not going to bet on it. The Golf Bible does a great overview of this year’s amateurs. I always cheer for the underdog, and these 6 guys definitely fit that category.
Lastly is the Drive, Chip and Putt Championship. This is a fun and competitive event created three years ago to ‘help grow the game’. It is interesting to see how good these young players really are! Of note, there are 3 Canadian players competing is this event. Congratulations to Vanessa Borovilos, Toronto, Ontario; Elaine Giantsopoulos, Richmond Hill, Ontario; and Jayla Kucy, Camrose, Alberta, for making it to the finals of the 2016 Drive, Chip and Putt Championship.
The Masters starts in two days! Are you ready? Do you have any highlights of this year’s Major you want to share?
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!